South Plainfield says red light cameras cause accidents

September 3, 2013 3:51:23 PM PDT
It might seem counterintuitive, but a borough in New Jersey is trying to get the state to get rid of its red light cameras because some officials claim accidents at these intersections are up.

In many communities, the accident rates are down.

"I think a lot of people that adhere to the rules get caught in that split second because the yellow light doesn't last too long," said Rebecca Harper, a Piscataway resident.

Rebecca Harper can't see any benefits to the Department of Transportation's red light cameras.

"I just stop on the yellow, I stop, I don't care what, I just stop," Harper said.

"We're seeing an increase in rear end collisions because people are stopping shorter than they normally would," said Matt Anesh, Mayor of South Plainfield.

South Plainfield said "no" to the cameras back in 2008, but neighboring Piscataway welcomed them.

And in two spots where the two towns' borders meet, at two busy intersections there's no dividing the cameras' actions.

"So we've kind of inherited the being involved in the program," Mayor Anesh said.

Local funeral home manager James Gustafson has fielded calls from people who were ticketed as they were part of a funeral procession.

"They got a ticket, who's fault, mine, yours, we try to give them the rules of the road," Gustafson said.

The mayor says a recent study showing a spike in accidents at red light camera intersections, is why he's calling for a resolution Tuesday night, to get the DOT to come out, review the evidence, and remove them.

"Instead of making it safer, it's making it much more dangerous," Mayor Anesh said.